Gratitude is more than an attitude
As our friends in the United States are about to celebrate Thanksgiving this coming Thursday, these reflections on gratitude, written a while ago, seem appropriate for reposting.
The Holiday of Thanksgiving is traditionally a time when people count their blessings. Engaging in gratitude is also a recommended practice in many ancient and more recent spiritual traditions.
As for how to practice gratitude, it is commonly understood as focusing on the good things and the blessings we have in our lives. Often it means paying attention to the things we take for granted: the wonderful people, the material goods and security that life has gifted us with. For many it is a way to channel the attention away from the negative aspects of their circumstances - away from all the places the mind gravitates towards when it goes unchecked.
Giving the mind a direction, a focus that yields positive feelings and appreciation, is a valuable practice in and of itself. With this practice, our attention is lead to a higher and happier vibration. It influences our mood and creates contentment, which in turn transforms our whole experience of life. Still, there is much more to gratitude than a positive attitude that creates a nice space for us and others.
Gratitude is in fact the language of the Self. Expressing gratitude - at its deepest level - means to be tuned in to the fact that all we see, know and are is a manifestation of the Divine Self. Everything in existence is a direct expression of that Divinity manifesting as people, animals and plants, rather as the whole universe. When we express true gratitude, we acknowledge the Divine Life that animates all the forms as our very own Source. In other words: expressing gratitude from that place of awareness brings us to know and experience the inherent Oneness of all.
Best wishes for a wonderful Holiday season! Hopefully this will encourage you to make your own experiment with gratitude that is more than an attitude. It will lead you to embody Oneness by expressing gratitude not only for their things in life, but for the Life in things ❤️